2020 Small Business Risk Report
Hanover Small Commercial

The influence of rate

Higher rate, higher interest

Roughly half of businesses reported rate increases across their workers' compensation, commercial auto and business owner's policies in 2019. In fact, 1 in 5 reported rate increases exceeding 5% across all three of those lines. These rate increases are driving more small businesses to think about their coverage options.

Additionally, respondents' interest in regular coverage evaluations increased as their rates did.

Small businesses with high rate increases

are highly concerned about evaluating their coverage

Small businesses with no recent rate increases

expressed high concern about evaluating their coverage

However, that doesn't mean these regular reviews are happening.


reported concern about more regularly evaluating their entire insurance policy after a rate change

...but 43%

haven't reviewed their entire policy and coverages within the past year

What matters most to small business owners

In our report, small business owners indicated a host of different priorities when they discuss how they invest their insurance dollars. Price, obviously, is among the top ones. However, the most commonly named top priority is breadth of coverage.

Small business owners' top priorities for insurance buying

  1. Breadth of coverage
  2. Reputation of company
  3. Agent recommendation
  4. Price
  5. Services


Small business owners experiencing rate increases are taking more interest in evaluating their insurance programs. They rely on the expertise of an independent agent to review their policies and ensure their needs are addressed, so they can focus on their core business. This reinforces the importance of the independent agency channel.

Brian Rakowsky, Vice President and National Sales Director